Tommy Tiernan is on the cover of the new Hot Press!

Finbar Furey, John Connors, George Best, Bantum, Gypsies On The Autobahn & the Lego Batman Movie also feature this fortnight...

If you’ve ever wondered what Tommy Tiernan looks like semi-naked, wrapped in clingfilm and with a pair of antlers on his head, wonder no more!

In the first of our Hot Press 40th Birthday Legends Series of interviews, the ever-loquacious Tommy talks to us about the runaway success of his 100% unscripted RTÉ ratings-grabber, The Tommy Tiernan Show.

“I don’t have somebody in my ear like most other chat show hosts, who would have a little earpiece and one of the producers upstairs suggesting, ‘Go this way. Go that way. Get him to recant that’ There’s none of that," he enthuses.

Needless to say, there’s controversy (“Heroin should be free. I think all junkies should get as much heroin as they want and then be made to live as pets with old people”) and wisecracks (“If contraception was ever an Olympic sport, I’d represent the country”) aplenty.

There’s a frank and fascinating meeting of minds between legendary folkster Finbar Furey and his fellow Traveller, actor and documentary-maker John Connors.

“When I meet a very small-minded person – I call them shallow people – I pity them in a way, because they could learn so much,” Finbar reflects while John asserts: “If you’re a young Traveller growing up today, the settled people either don’t know about the level of discrimination and racism, or they don’t give a shit.”

We meet Gypsies On The Autobahn, the Dublin quartet set to take the charts by storm with their debut Born Brief album.

Fidel, Che, revolution, sanctions, terror attacks, religion and Trump are all on the agenda as the Cuban Ambassador, Hermes Herrera Hernández, stars in the Hot Press Interview.

“The blockade is still in force in spite of the measures taken by Obama,” he insists.

In a special Frontlines report, we look at the rise of the US’ left-wing Antifa movement, and the masked black bloc activists behind the recent Presidential inauguration and Berkley campus riots.

“The rulebook has been thrown out,” says a female protestor. “It’s absolutely acceptable to use violence. They are 100% certain to use it against us.”

We meet the maker of the new George Best: All By Himself documentary, and ask whether the Belfast Boy really is the greatest football-player this island has produced?

We run the rule over new albums by Sleaford Mods, Joe Chester and Menace Beach (to mention just three!); the fortnight’s big movies including Hidden Figures, Patriots Day and Miss Sloane, and recent live performances by Frightened Rabbit, Conor Oberst and Interference and their all-star guests.

Add in chats with Bantum, Black Star Riders, Ailbhe Reddy, Moving Hearts legend Keith Donald, hot Irish literary property Karl Geary, and two of the Hollywood stars gracing The Lego Batman Movie, Zach Galifianakis and Will Arnett, and you’ve some seriously tasty reading to look forward to!


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